8 August, 2002
Today at CRREL
With the green mountains towering in the background and the pine
smell coursing through the warm breeze, it is a beautiful day in
Hanover, NH as we begin our foray into polar survival training.
To be out and alone in an isolated expanse with no McDonalds on the corner, in fact no bathroom, phone, lights, TV, phone and a temperature that can range from 70 degrees above zero to a bone chilling 50 degrees below zero, that is where I will need to survive. Brain Horner, a survival trainer and president of
Learn to Return , taught the pre-season TEAs many useful survival tips.
We studied knot tying, shelter building, field first aid, and fire
building. We had simulations of disasters and possible situations that
might occur. We were fortunate enough to be taped by the local news service and had our highlights on the 11:00 news. We learned about the
caloric intake required in polar regions and one of our directors, Dr.
Debra Meese, even sampled chocolate covered cricket.
Your out on the ice, it breaks and everything you own is wet. All you have salvaged is, mayonnaise packettes, tin foil, lip balm, petroleum jelly, steel wool, and your cell phone. What would you make your fire from? How would you start it? You could shake out the steel
wool, open up the cell phone, and rub it on both battery contacts.
What could you use for fuel? The mayonnaise, lip balm and petroleum
jelly. Build a fire bowl out of the tin foil, use a piece of you
cotton shirt for a wick to light the fuel. So are you ready to come
with me now?
The more I learn about polar regions and polar research, the more excited I am to be a part of this excellent program. I am in awe knowing what it takes to survive in such remote regions. It is a challenge that I look forward to beginning.
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